June 30, 2016

Because of your strong support of the District and our students, we have crossed another goal line. Today, the SCS board voted 7-0 to pass our budget at $985 million for the 2016-2017 school year.

After last night’s vote by the Shelby County Commission to grant the district $22 million, we will only have to dip into our general fund for $3.5 million to fully balance our budget. This is an incredible accomplishment.

Additionally, we recommended that some previous cuts be added back to the budget, including Hope Academy, reading and math interventionists and guidance counselors. You have invested in the District, and they want to provide a return on that investment. The final budget will be reviewed by the Shelby County Commission in July.

It has been a long and difficult process, but through the Students Deserve More campaign, you have worked with and for us to ensure our students have the necessary programs and tools they need to succeed. Thank you for all you have done to support the district. Moving forward, the great work you do will be even more meaningful to the students they serve.


June 29, 2016

After many hours of labor and deliberation, the Shelby County Commission voted to grant Shelby County Schools $22 million for the 2016-2017 school year. We are pleased that the county sees the value in high quality education for all children in Greater Memphis and in turn, made a decision to ensure our district has proper funding and sustainability.

This accomplishment was made possible by your commitment and hard work. Your advocacy efforts have proven that our students deserve more, they and will receive more through highly effective teachers, adequate education programs, resources and student supports.

While there is still more work to do, these funds have set a strong foundation for their budgetary efforts approaching the new school year.

Thank you again for your support and concern for the children you serve daily. Shelby County Schools looks forward to continuing to make strong investments in our students.


June 16, 2016

On Wednesday, we had the chance to go before the Shelby County Commission one last time before the final decision regarding our 2016-17 budget is made next Monday. After a very productive discussion, Commissioners stated their intent to provide $20 million in additional funding to support our students. This will come from maintaining the current contribution, along with a portion of the County's Wheel Tax and an additional investment.

You might remember, our initial request to the County Commission to close our 2016-17 budget gap was $27 million, so we still have some thoughtful work ahead to determine the best options for covering the remaining $7 million with minimal impact to teaching and learning. Still, we are extremely pleased and thankful that Commissioners have made such a strong commitment to the students of Shelby County. This is an investment that I'm certain will not only benefit our community in the coming year, but also for years to come. It’s a signal that the work we are doing in this District is recognized as being a critical component to the success of our County as a whole.

All of the countless teachers, staff members, parents and community partners who advocated on behalf of our students and District throughout this process deserve a tremendous amount of gratitude.

As a reminder, we still have one final step ahead as the County Commission is scheduled for its official vote on our 2016-17 budget Monday, June 20, at 3 p.m. during the regular meeting that takes place at the Vasco A. Smith, Jr. County Administration Building (160 N. Main St.). You can tune in live to hear the meeting on 88.5FM or www.voiceofscs.com. We look forward to providing an update following Monday's meeting.


June 06, 2016

Last week we presented our 2016-2017 budget to the Shelby County Commission, requesting $27 million dollars to ensure our District CAN continue the positive investments we’ve made in our students. The Commission has decided to the delay the vote to June 20. The Commission finance committee will make recommendations on June 15.

We do not view this as a setback, but as an opportunity to further educate the community on why these additional funds are crucial to the work we do every day. Please take this time to visit studentsdeservemore.com to see how far we’ve come in the budget process. There, you will find more detailed information, updates, as well as resources to advocate on our behalf.

We will continue to keep you up to date with the latest developments and additional ways you can help. Thank you for your commitment to our students.


May 25, 216

May 25, 216
Today Shelby County Schools presented its 2016-2017 budget to the Shelby County Commission. Meetings will resume June 1 and June 3. View the budget here.

May 17, 2016

The Shelby County Schools Board approved a resolution, clearing the way for the District to engage the County Commission with a request for additional funding for our students. We recognize this has been a difficult budget season, and we regret the uncertainty and stress it’s created. Our budget gap currently sits at approximately $27.5 million, so the ask of County Commission would have to total at least $35 million to account for the portions due by law to the charters, ASD and municipal districts.

With hard work, they've been able to restore some of our highest priority items, including:

  • Three percent salary increases for our TEM 3-5 teachers
  • CLUE positions (Pre-K - 2)
  • ESL positions CTE positions
  • iZone extended day
  • iZone reading teachers

Regarding the recommended closures of several low-performing and underutilized schools, Board members only approved the closures of Messick Adult Center and Memphis Health Careers Academy for the 2016-17 school year. The Board voted to keep Northside High School open for one more year, delaying the approved closure until after the 2016-17 school year. The vote on closing Carver High was postponed until a later date. The input sessions and sharing feedback have been valuable.

The District will present the proposed budget to the County Commission on May 25, with a vote scheduled for June 6. Please attend meetings on June 1 and June 6 to show your support of additional funds to continue investing in our children. They deserve more.

May 11, 2016

SCS took a long, hard look at ways to provide each SCS student with a fair and equitable education. The original proposed cuts to the budget were severe, but the District has managed to keep proposed teacher salary increases, CLUE positions for pre-K through second grade, ESL positions, CTE positions, iZone reading teachers and more in the 2016-2017 school year.

The funding gap has been narrowed from $36 million to $27 million. However, lack of sufficient funding from the Commission and the State of Tennessee continues to put us in situations that require difficult decisions. For that reason, Shelby County Schools is requesting an additional $35 million in funding from the Shelby County Commission. By law, the District retains only $0.78 for each dollar from the County because ASD and Charter Schools would receive a portion of that money.

The 2016-2017 school year budget will include the closing of low-performing and underutilized schools, the reduction of some operational services, and possible changes to benefits packages. The District continues to ensure the students from the schools that are closing will experience a smooth transition to their new schools.

We encourage you to stay involved. Thank you for your commitment to our students, because they deserve more.